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If Kavanaugh Is Delayed, Republicans Could Pay This Fall

On her Tuesday radio show, host Laura Ingraham heard from several callers who minced no words — 'I just won't vote'

Senate Republicans could be in trouble with voters this fall if they fail to approve U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. That’s according to an array of everyday Americans who made their voices heard Tuesday morning.

On her radio show this morning, host Laura Ingraham addressed the 11th-hour allegations that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted someone while in high school more than 35 years ago, when he was a teenager.

Kavanaugh has vigorously denied such a thing happened — then or ever.

And yet a new hearing has been scheduled for Monday, at which Kavanaugh and his accuser, a California psychologist, may both testify.

Several callers to “The Laura Ingraham Show” raised the red flag should Republicans fail to approve Kavanaugh’s nomination before the midterms. They warned that an inability to put Kavanaugh on the high court could impact their vote in the midterms and perhaps even beyond.

“I’m been traveling around the country attending Trump rallies,” one caller from Texas said. “I can tell you firsthand if Republicans don’t grow a backbone to support Kavanaugh and take the vote now, they’re going to have hell to pay come November. People are fed up.”

Related: Democrats Renew Calls to Delay Kavanaugh Vote Amid Sexual Assault Scandal

Senate Democrats have called for delaying Kavanaugh’s nomination to the high court for various reasons ever since President Donald Trump announced the nomination in early July. Kavanaugh now stands accused of sexual assault — an issue that has prompted a handful of Republicans to call for a delay as well. But delaying or failing to confirm his nomination before the midterms is problematic.

“I will not fight for the Republicans if they don’t go strongly against this,” a caller from Connecticut told Ingraham. “I won’t vote for a Democrat, but I won’t vote for a Republican, either,” said this individual. “I just won’t vote. [Some] people want to live in a progressive, socialist republic.”

“I’ll be voting in the upcoming election, but I won’t be voting with the Republicans,” said another caller, this one from Pennsylvania. “And I don’t vote Democrat. I will vote either third party or write-in. Because I’m not going to allow them to take my vote. I will be voting, just not for them.”

The Pennsylvania caller wasn’t alone in saying he would vote but does not feel tied to the Republican Party, especially if the GOP fails to deliver on the nomination.

Ingraham then asked how the Pennsylvania caller how he arrived at that position.

“They’ve done this so many times,” the caller answered. “They have no backbone, they have no spine. They allow this to happen. The hearing should go on. [Sen. Chuck] Grassley [of Iowa, the committee chairman] should have told the lady, ‘Okay, you come in today or tomorrow and we’ll hear what you have to say, and then we’ll hear what he has to say, and we’ll make our decision.’ Because you’re not going to be able to make a clear decision. It’s whoever you believe the most.”

Kavanaugh was first accused of sexual assault when a letter from an unnamed woman leaked last week. Christine Blasey Ford then revealed herself to be the alleged victim on Sunday. She claimed the incident occurred in high school when he was drunk at a party; Kavanaugh denied those allegations.

Senate Judiciary Committee ranking member Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and some others received a letter from the alleged victim earlier in the summer. The group agreed not to go public; but once the details of the letter were leaked, the accusations moved to the forefront. The Senate Judiciary Committee had been scheduled to vote on whether to advance Kavanaugh’s nomination to the full Senate for consideration Thursday. But that vote is now in question; the committee is already set to hold another hearing on Monday.

Related: Kavanaugh Denies Dems’ 11th-Hour Sexual Assault Allegations

“I cannot vote for the Democrats and if the Republicans refuse to fight for Judge Kavanaugh, then I can’t vote for them,” a different caller from Connecticut said. “So I guess, you know what — I just don’t vote.”

“I am infuriated,” a caller from North Carolina said. “The reason we voted for Trump, or at least the reason I did, is because of his outstanding SCOTUS picks. If they don’t push Kavanaugh through and this thing gets torpedoed, they will never seek another Supreme Court justice, especially a man, because if Democrats can come up at the 11th hour with … this particular person, they’re going to come up with another high school person down the line.”

“Kavanaugh is sitting on a circuit court right now,” the North Carolina caller said. “He’s a judge. If the Democrats torpedo him, I think it will also be politically bad for them because they’ll have no choice other than to impeach Kavanaugh. I mean, how can they not? It would be total hypocrisy to allow him to sit on the circuit he is right now if he’s a sexual predator.”

“I am infuriated. The reason we voted for Trump, or at least the reason I did, is because of his outstanding SCOTUS picks.”

Three Republicans — Sens. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.), Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) — have all discussed the need to delay the vote. Flake is the only Republican on the committee to call for a delay. Corker also supports delaying the vote; Murkowski said the committee might have to delay it.

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Grassley said in response to the controversy that the accuser deserves to be heard and her information assessed. But he also questioned the timing and the way in which the information was revealed.

Kavanaugh was a high school student at Georgetown Preparatory School when the alleged incident occurred. The letter reportedly described how he was drunk and held the woman down at a party in Maryland. Both Kavanaugh and another individual who was said to be in the room at the time, Mark Judge, have both denied any such thing happened.

meet the author

Connor D. Wolf covers Congress and national politics and can be reached at [email protected].